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THE BATTLE FOR MODeRN 1923

I don’t love studying. I hate studying. I like learning. Learning is beautiful.
Natalie Portman

Recherche pour FLomm Bibliography

FLomm could not have been possible
without some old fashioned book learnin

While many resources can be found online,
others are well hidden in peach-coloured
pages from archives and collections.

These works help FLomm take flight.

Along with each entry are source links and a
blurb on why we like this find. Some listings
appear in more than one category.

Bauhaus

Prod. Julia Cave. Narr. Frank Whitford. Bauhaus: The Face of the 20th Century.Films for the Humanities & Sciences, 1994. Web. Retrieved 24 Apr. 2013.
This film takes a 1980s book and turns it into a 1990s documentary: Rare interviews, footage and commentary. Bauhaus opens, prospers then ends up in a telephone factory surrounded by Nazis.

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Bergdoll, Barry, and Leah Dickerman, et al. Bauhaus 1919–1933: Workshops for Modernity.New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2009.
A look at the Bauhaus with fresh eyes and new philosophies; part of a huge exhibition held in 2009 in NYC.

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Droste, Magdalena. Bauhaus: 1919–1933.Berlin: Taschen, 1990. Print.
A great overview of the Bauhaus – from the Archiv in Berlin.
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Fiedler, Jeannine, and Peter Feirabend, eds. Bauhaus.Cologne: Könemann, 1999. Print.
A large coffee table edition filled with images and essays about Bauhaus concepts, figures and influence.
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Kandinsky, Wassily. Bauhaus 9: Point and Line to Plane.Dessau: Bauhaus, 1926. Internet Archive. Retrieved 16 Mar. 2012.
Between 1924 and 1930, the Bauhaus published a series of 15 theoretical design books. This one is a treatise on the interaction of form and composition by Russian Avant-Garde visionary Wassily Kandinsky. It’s how everything goes together, reacts to each other and how it does what it does.
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Kupferschmid, Indra. ‘True Type of the Bauhaus’.Fonts In Use, 11 December 2010. Web. Retrieved 15 July 2011.
The Bauhaus and its Art Nouveau tendencies! A short overview of what fonts were REALLY used at the Bauhaus – before their revolution changed everything.
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Lupton, Ellen and J. Abbott Miller, eds. The ABC’s of [triangle square circle] The Bauhaus and Design Theory.New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1991. Print.
A beautifully-designed and written collection of chapters on the Bauhaus and its approach to design philosophy and education.

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Moholy-Nagy, László. Bauhaus 8: Painting Photography Film.2nd ed. Dessau: Bauhaus, 1927. Print.
Between 1924 and 1930, the Bauhaus published a series of 15 theoretical design books. This edition is an overview of Hungarian Constructivist László Moholy-Nagy’s photography ideology and how it can lead to a ‘transformation of human vision’ – and how motorcycles look really cool when photographed.

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Whitford, Frank. Bauhaus.London: Thames and Hudson, 1984. Print.
From the World of Art series: An outstanding short history of the Bauhaus – goes behind the scenes into pre-history, the personality clashes, the food (garlic!), the ever-present Lyonel Feininger and the early closure by the Nazis.
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Wingler, Hans M. The Bauhaus: Weimar, Dessau, Berlin, Chicago.Cambridge: MIT Press, 1969. Print.
At the time of publication, this was THE phone book-sized Bauhaus edition to own. It’s all black and white, but really. Coolest cover ever!
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Clip Art, Cuts, Engravings

American Type Founders. Specimen Book and Catalogue 1923.Elizabeth, NJ: American Type Founders, 1923. Web. Internet Archive. Retrieved 22 Jan. 2012.
Historical and collectible: American Type Founders’ 1923 ‘catalogue’ is a rare, industry-specific piece of printed art. Decorative borders, printers cuts and equipment, fonts and, of course, advertising copy written to sell, sell, sell!

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Cabarga, Leslie. Art Deco Advertising: Authentic Layouts, Lettering and Border Designs 1920–1940.5 vols. New York: Art Direction, 1988–1990. Print.
An exhaustive five volume collection of rare black and white type specimens, borders, advertisement clips and ‘shells’ for newspaper cinema ads.
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Corvin, Otto von, Fred W. Held, H.W. Dulcken and others. Yorston’s Popular History of the World: Division VII.New York: John C. Yorston, 1886. Print.
Volume 7 of an illustrated history containing ‘two thousand engravings,’ a breakout of empires and wars and Otto von Bismarck!
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Grafton, Carol Belanger. ‘Life’ Magazine Cuts and Illustrations 1923–1935.New York: Dover, 1985. Print.
‘Jazz Age’ cartoon spot illustrations, where people first became geometric and very New Yorker-esque.
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Grafton, Carol Belanger. Humorous Victorian Spot Illustrations.New York: Dover, 1995. Print.
Hand-drawn images from British humour magazine Punch, published 1841–1914. It was a time when people were made of rubber.
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Grafton, Carol Belanger. Trades and Occupations: A Pictorial Archive from Early Sources.New York: Dover, 1990. Print.
People working. In their (mostly 19th Century) trades and their occupations.
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Hart, Harold H. Picture Archives: Borders & Frames.New York: Hart, 1977. Print.
A collection of public domain borders, frames and illustrations. Boxy, but not too boxy.
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Harter, Jim. Images of World Architecture.New York: Random House, 1990. Print.
A large collection of architectural engravings organized chronologically by culture, empire and country. And columns. Lots of columns.
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Jones, Owen. Grammar of Ornament: Illustrated by Examples from Various Styles of Ornament.London: Day and Son, 1856. Print.
THE bible of Victorian ornament – a source book of decoration from around the world; use everything, it’ll look ‘richer’ that way.
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Mendenhall, John. Scan This Book.New York: Art Direction, 1992. Print.
A nice collection of illustrations and engravings from old catalogues and other sources. From people who never received credit for any of it.
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Quinn, Gerald. The Clip Art Book.New York: Gramercy, 1992. Print..
A large edition of public domain illustration, images and type.
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Smith, George A. The Illustrated History of Rome.Vol. 1 and 2. Philadelphia: Gebbie & Co, 1884. Print.
Oversize, authoritative history embellished with elaborate engravings. Not sure how accurate it is, but damn, looks incredible nonetheless!
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Zucker, Irving. A Source Book of French Advertising Art.New York: George Braziller, 1964. Print.
A collection of public domain typography, ornate borders and illustrations. Extremely, unmistakably French.
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Colour

Cabarga, Leslie. The Designer’s Guide to Colour Combinations.Cincinnati: North Light, 1999. Print.
A valuable collection of colour palettes and CYMK-based formulas adapted from historical ephemera; organized by design style/trend and decade. With notes and more palettes and notes and palettes and more, more, more!
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Cabarga, Leslie. The Designer’s Guide to Global Colour Combinations.Cincinnati: HOW Design Books, 2001. Print.
Even more colour palettes and CYMK- and RGB-based formulas adapted from worldwide ephemera; organized by geographic region/country and culture. Includes some Russian palettes that are depressing. Really.
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Finlay, Victoria. Colour: A Natural History of the Palette.London: Hodder and Stoughton, 2002. Print.
An anecdotal, historical story of colour – its meaning, where it comes from (wars fought) and its place in our society. Wonderful read – you’ll never drink cherry soda ever again!
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Itten, Johannes. The Art of Colour.New York: Reinhold Publishing, 1961. Print.
Johannes Itten’s oversized, unabridged edition on colour theory – filled with ‘tipped-in’ historical examples. A great save by a guy who did a lot of weird stuff at the Bauhaus.
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Cubism

Antliff, Mark, and Patricia Leighten. Cubism and Culture.London: Thames and Hudson, 2001. Print.
From the World of Art series: An overview of Cubism’s spread from ‘primitivism’ to Picasso and Braque into the culture that ended up fighting the first World War. Looks at it from every angle. Really. I wrote that.
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Baldassari, Anne. Cubist Picasso.Paris: Flammarion, 2007. Print.
A visual collection celebrating the 100 year anniversary of Pablo Picasso’s Demoiselles d’Avigon. Picasso sketches and tests and sketches until he makes New. And then makes more New and eventually does something else. But that happens later.
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Cooper, Douglas. The Cubist Epoch.London: Phaidon, 1970. Print.
A look at Cubism from originators Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque and beyond; this book traces the style through numerous practitioners – who are either geniuses or not very creative. You decide.
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Cuisine

Freeman, Caitlin. Modern Art Desserts.Berkeley: Ten Speed Press, 2013. Print.
Lick this book! Inspired originally by the tasty paintings of Wayne Thiebaud, these are the SFMoMA pastries of Blue Bottle Coffee chef Caitlin Freeman. Mondrian, Matisse, Kahlo. After dinner.
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Ha’nish, Otoman Zar-Adusht. Mazdaznan Encyclopedia of Dietetics and Home Cook Book.Chicago: Mazdaznan Associates of God, 1909. Internet Archive.
What did Johannes Itten eat at the Bauhaus? This is it – an early 20th century diet of vegetarian wonders.
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Lovegren, Sylvia. Fashionable Food: Seven Decades of Food Fads.Hoboken: Wiley, 1995. Print.
Where comfort food comes from: An anecdotal look at historic food trends – with recipes and the great canned Sausage of Vienna!
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Marinetti, F.T., Suzanne Brill, and Lesley Chamberlin, ed. The Futurist Cookbook.San Francisco: Bedford Arts, 1991. Print.
Provocative performance art meets supper! Futurism founder F.T. Marinetti didn’t stop with art; he proposed a whole new cuisine that favours speed and aesthetics over boring old pasta. This translation breaks it all out; elasticake, sculpted-meat, aerofood and ‘nourishment by radio.’ With coffee. And perfume. Perfume??
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Novero, Cecilia. Antidiets of the Avant-Garde: From Futurist Cooking to Eat Art.Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2010. Print.
Transformed culinary experience: An analysis of 20th Century avant–garde (and neo-avant-garde) eating. Because Cold Stone Creamery isn’t weird enough.
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DADA

Ades, Dawn. The DADA Reader: A Critical Anthology.Illustrated ed. London: Tate, 2006. Print.
This is a great collection of DADA on DADA. Why DADA but why not DADA and why DADA isn’t DADA for DADA. DA?
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Codrescu, Andrei. The Posthuman DADA Guide: Tzara and Lenin Play Chess.Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2009. Print.
Entertaining, contradictory, intellectual, silly – a romp through the personalities, philosophies and history of DADA by NPR’s Andrei Codrescu.
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Dickerman, Leah, ed. DADA: Zurich, Berlin, Hanover, Cologne, New York, Paris.Washington: National Gallery of Art, 2005. Print.
Excellent visual overview of DADA; organized by geography, where DADA took on different approaches, different forms. Book design beautifully executed by Daphne Geismar. And a bunch of stuff is sideways. Because DADA.
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Richter, Hans. DADA: Art and Anti-Art.New York: Thames and Hudson, 1965. Print.
A personal look back on DADA by one of its artists. Starts out really wondering why this whole thing became a thing. Then he continues.
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Tzara, Tristan, ed. DADA no. 1.Zürich: 1917, Issuu. Web. Retrieved 5 Feb. 2012.
In order for DADA to spread it needed propaganda; this came in the form of an art and literature magazine edited by Tristan Tzara.
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Tzara, Tristan, ed. DADA no. 2.Zürich: 1917, Issuu. Web. Retrieved 5 Feb. 2012.
More avant-garde art and writings from Zürich. DA DA DA.
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Tzara, Tristan, ed. DADA no. 3.Zürich: 1918, Issuu. Web. Retrieved 5 Feb. 2012.
DADA 3 goes in a more Futurist direction; and Tzara updates the DADA Manifesto. And it may self-destruct. Not sure.
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De Stijl

Blotkamp, Carel, Hans Esser, et al. De Stijl: The Formative Years 1917–1922.Cambridge: MIT Press,, 1982. Print.
A collection of essays looking at the early years of the Dutch avant-garde ‘group’ (which wasn’t actually a group) and how ‘they’ (they weren’t a they either) ended up influencing art and design worldwide.
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Overy, Paul. De Stijl.London: Thames & Hudson, 1991. Print.
From the World of Art series: Dutch propagandist (and publisher) Theo van Doesburg creates an avant-garde movement centred around primary colours and lines and (somewhere in there) Piet Mondrian.
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Expressionism

Crofts, Lewis. The Pornographer of Vienna.Brecon, UK: Old Street, 2008. Print.
An engrossing, fictional account of the life of Austrian expressionist Egon Schiele – explicit, decadent, dirty – though misunderstood.
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Dir. David Grubin. Narr. David McCullough. Degenerate Art.PBS Home Video, 1997. Videocassette.
A powerful look at Adolph Hitler’s post-1933 attack on modern art – an overview of his purge of ‘non-Germanic’ artwork, the 1937 exhibition he used to gather public support and the fate of the artists (and their work). Plus, shows how in the 1990s surviving Degenerate works were then put on display in Hitler’s OWN museum. Now that’s a dish served cold!
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Dube, Wolf-Dieter. The Expressionists.London: Thames and Hudson, 1972. Print.
From the World of Art series: An introduction to the anti-academic German Expressionists.
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Figura, Starr. German Expressionism: The Graphic Impulse.New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2011. Print.
Expressionist woodcut prints – which revitalized the pre-renaissance history of German woodblock printing – is profiled in this well-designed MoMA edition.
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Heller, Reinhold. Brücke: The Birth of Expressionism in Dresden and Berlin, 1905–1913.New York: Hatje Cantz, 2009. Print.
A look at the ‘bridge’ between old Germanic art and new ideas bouncing around Europe – resulting in expressive works that changed art in Germany.
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Formalities

Allcock, Hubert. Heraldic Design: Its Origins, Ancient Forms and Modern Usage.New York: Tudor, 1962. Print.
An charming overview of heraldic standards – including a section on developing a ‘blasoun’ for personal or commercial use. Mentions how the US hates ‘shields,’ which is why there’s ‘seals’ everywhere instead.
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Baur, Eva Gesine, and Ingo F. Walther. Rococo.Cologne: Taschen, 2007. Print.
A pictorial overview of the 18th century European style of dramatic excess that was Rococo.
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Brasch, Rudi, and Li Brasch. How Did It Begin? The Origins of Our Curious Customs and Superstitions.New York: MJF Books, 2006. Print.
An odd look at where things come from, based on historical record, conjecture and anecdote.
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Erickson, Amanda. ‘A Brief History of the Parking Meter’.The Atlantic, 03 April 2012. Web. Retrieved 17 October 2012.
The ‘Magee-Hale Park-O-Meter’ is invented, shows up in Oklahoma City. (And FLomm pretends the year isn’t on this article.)
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Ficacci, Luigi. Piranesi: The Complete Etchings.Cologne: Taschen, 2000. Print.
Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720–78) took some liberties in his view of what Rome may have been. This book collects his neo-classical fantasy environments – which look like they could have been used in an old Schwarzenegger film.
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Gale, E.A.M. ‘The Hawthorne studies – a fable for our times?’.QJM, Vol. 97, No. 7. 01 July 2004, pp. 439–449. Web. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
Began in 1924, a series of psychological studies on workers at a Western Electric plant outside of Chicago – which lead to a deeper understanding of worker motivation and productivity – beyond monetary incentives. Did some damage to the whole ‘we want you to make us rich’ argument some CEOs use to motivate their workforce.
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Hutt, Allen. Fournier: The Compleat Typographer.Totowa, NJ: Rowman and Littlefield, 1972. Print.
Pierre Simon Fournier was a French type designer – who managed to merge typography with rococo – resulting in gorgeous letterforms and ornamental ‘dingbat’-like flowers – which are called ‘fleurons.’ So now you know.
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Jenkins, Jessica Kerwin. Encyclopedia of the Exquisite: An Anecdotal History of Elegant Delights.New York: Doubleday, 2010. Print.
A fun read! An historical overview of small portions of the societal world, art, fashion, style and more. If this book doesn’t help you with conversations at parties, there’s really no hope.
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Lynes, Russell. The Tastemakers.3rd ed. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1954. Print.
From lowbrow to highbrow – Russell Lynes’ playful classic history of the evolution of the ‘abstraction’ we know as ‘taste.’
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McGeough, Kevin M. The Romans: An Introduction.Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. Print.
An overview of the history, politics, religion and culture of Ancient Rome. Which we all based things upon.
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McWhorter, John. Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold History of English.New York: Gotham, 2008. Print.
John McWhorter takes apart the English language – its perceived origins – and rewrites the book, literally. And literally. Great insights, intriguing read, screwy language.
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Post, Emily. Etiquette.New York: Funk & Wagnals, 1942. Print.
Emily Post’s ‘blue book of social usage’ set the standard for proper etiquette and good manners. It’s all here. Now shut up, and comb your hair.
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Shaw, Karl. Royal Babylon: The Alarming History of European Royalty.New York: Broadway, 2001. Print.
An irreverent and disturbing look at the abuses of Kings, Queens and their courts. Cause they could.
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Tillyard, E.M.W. The Elizabethan World Picture.New York: Random House, 1959. Print.
A look at the ordered structural beliefs of the Elizabethan Age – and how these concepts ended up influencing culture, the arts, literature and theatre. Like living in a fantasy world but it’s really the real world at the same time.
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Vidal, Gore. Empire.New York: Random House, 1987. Print.
Gore Vidal’s historical (and speculative) look at The United States’ Guilded Age – part of his ‘Narratives of Empire’ series of novels: Turn of the century aristocrats, politicians and journalists place the United States on the world stage. Because power is cool.
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Weber, Caroline. Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution.Paperback ed. New York: Picador, 2006. Print.
A look at Marie Antoinette’s influence on fashion, structure and politics in the court of Louis XVI.
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Futurism

Celant, Germano, with Gianfranco Maraniello, eds. Vertigo: A Century of Multimedia Art, From Futurism to the Web.Milan: Skira, 2008. Print.
A collection of essays expounding on 20th century technologies and their effect on avant-garde art. An accompaniment to the ‘Vertigo’ exhibition held 2007 in Bologna. Hey, eventually we had to move beyond painting, right?
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Hulten, Pontus. Futurismo & Futurismi.Milan: Bompiani, 1986. Print.
A large, phone book-sized exhibition catalogue covering pre-Futurism, Futurism and what could be seen as Post-Futurism (other forms of modern art) – all part of a philosophy that Futurism wasn’t just relegated to Italy. Includes a ‘Dictionary of Futurism.’ Whole thing says everything is Futurism. You’re Futurism too!
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Humphreys, Richard. Futurism.Milan: Bompiani, 1986. Print.
From The Tate’s Movements in Modern Art series: A quick overview of the political, social and technological concepts that fuelled the Futurists. Including poetry and art about street lights murdering the moon!
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Lewis, Daniel, Tony Conrad, Paul Szp, et al. Futurismo: The Soundtrack to a Typeface.Buffalo: P22 Records, 1998. CD.
Nine tracks created an an homage to the futurist manifesto of sound, L'arte dei Rumori [The Art of Noises], 1913. Functions as the soundtrack to P22’s Il Futurismo font – because every font needs a soundtrack!
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Marinetti, F.T., Suzanne Brill, and Lesley Chamberlin, ed. The Futurist Cookbook.San Francisco: Bedford Arts, 1991. Print.
Provocative performance art meets supper! Futurism founder F.T. Marinetti didn’t stop with art; he proposed a whole new cuisine that favours speed and aesthetics over boring old pasta. This translation breaks it all out; elasticake, sculpted-meat, aerofood and ‘nourishment by radio.’ With coffee. And perfume. Perfume??
Source   Buy   Find in library

Poggi, Christine. Inventing Futurism: The Art and Politics of Artificial Optimism.Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2008. Print.
A look at Futurism that goes deeper than the typical analysis. Obsession, fanaticism, and fear: Poggi takes apart the work of the individuals who made up this movement – including how the Futurists could have had pure geometric abstraction before Malevich – if only ego and nationalism didn’t get in the way.
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Scudiero, Maurizio. Depero 50.Roverto: Studio 53 Arte, 2009. Print.
An exhibition catalogue from 2009: This is a fascinating monograph of the original art and handdrawn commercial work of Fortunato Depero. Optimistic, playful, fun. May make one crave a bitter shot of Campari.
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Tisdall, Caroline, and Angelo Bozzolla. Futurism.New York: Thames and Hudson, 1985. Print.
From the World of Art series: A history of the Futurist movement – its rise, revolution, influence on cultural change and descent into fascism. The last part historians don’t like to talk about. Also the stuff about women. So do what fashion designers do – get ideas, ignore the later chapters.
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Graphic Design

Armstrong, Helen. Graphic Design Theory: Readings from the Field.New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2009. Print.
Historical and contemporary ideas, concepts and manifestos – all in one well-organized place, ready to tap.
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Bantjes, Marian. I Wonder.New York: Monacelli, 2010. Print.
A collection of observations and insights on design, art and life – collected in a book that itself is a work of art – ‘I Wonder’ channels the great, often-ignored beauty that was a part of pre-renaissance illuminated manuscripts. A gorgeous edition, personal, enchanting.
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Bury, Stephen. Breaking the Rules: The Printed Face of the European Avant Garde 1900–1937.London: The British Library, 2007. Print.
The moderns had their propaganda devices: Magazines, books, manifestos. From Belgrade to New York, this volume takes a look at the influential book arts and ephemera of the avant-garde.
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Cabarga, Leslie. Art Deco Advertising: Authentic Layouts, Lettering and Border Designs 1920–1940.5 vols. New York: Art Direction, 1988–1990. Print.
An exhaustive five volume collection of rare black and white type specimens, borders, advertisement clips and ‘shells’ for newspaper cinema ads.
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Cramsie, Patrick. The Story of Graphic Design.New York: Abrams, 2010. Print.
A well-written alternative to the standard, academic Meggs text; Cramsie’s enjoyable ‘story’ reads like a comfortable novel; covering the human need to communicate through visual form. And make history doing it.
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Heller, Steven, and Louise Fili. German Modern: Wilhelm to Weimar.San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1998. Print.
From Lucian Bernhard and through the 1920s, a visual compilation from where modern graphic design was born – when Cabaret took place. Imagine Liza just hanging out with all the images in this book surrounding her. Yeah. That’s it.
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Heller, Steven, and Louise Fili. Italian Art Deco: Graphic Design Between the Wars.San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1993. Print.
Bold and dramatic: A collection of Italian commercial works – influenced by Futurism, controlled by politics and promoting fine dining!
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Heller, Steven, and Mirko Ilic. Genius Moves: 100 Icons of Graphic Design.Cincinnati: North Light, 2001. Print.
Ideal for inspiration, or borrowing from history: This book takes the ‘everything’s been done before’ concept and actually proves it. Hundreds of historical and contemporary design pieces organized by similarity. Nothing new to see here, move along.
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Heller, Steven, and Seymour Chwast. Graphic Style: From Victorian to Digital.New ed. New York: Abrams, 2000. Print.
An excellent visual reference book of mostly 20th century historical graphic design. Mostly black and white. But nice anyway.
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Le Coultre, Martijn F. Wendingen: A Journal for the Arts 1918–1932.New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2001. Print.
Mostly reproducing inventive and stunning covers by a who’s who of modern design, this book is an overview of the 116 issue run of the rare, Dutch art and design magazine Wendingen. And now you’ve heard of Wendingen – so there’s no reason to say you’ve never heard of it.
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Lipmann, Anthony. Divinely Elegant: The World of Ernst Dryden.London: Pavilion, 1989. Print.
The life’s work of artist, graphic designer, fashion pioneer and costume designer Ernst Dryden was found in 1976 – in a trash heap in England. This led writer Anthony Lipmann on a research journey that resulted in this book, an overview of Dryden, a rare figure whose career spanned from Berlin to Vienna, Paris to New York and eventually Hollywood.
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Lissitzky, El, and Hans Arp. The Isms of Art.Erlenbach-Zürich: Eugen Rentsch Verlag, 1925. Print.
One of Lissitzky’s graphic design masterpieces: A look at radical modern art movements while they were being radical. Covers important movements from 1914–24.
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Lupton, Ellen, and Elaine Lustig Cohen. Letters from the Avant Garde.New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1996. Print.
How the avant-garde communicated: Letters on letterhead, in envelopes or on postcards – typed or written by the original hands. From Marinetti to the Bauhaus, an excellent visual collection of historical correspondence.
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Meggs, Philip B., and Alston W. Purvis. Meggs’ History of Graphic Design.5th ed. Hoboken: Wiley, 2012. Print.
In 1983, Philip B. Meggs (1942–2002) published the first ever History of Graphic Design. He referred to it as ‘his’ history of graphic design, not ‘the’ history – and it became one of the best ‘visual communication’ reference books available. The 5th edition adds new images (of old and new) as well as updated material.
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Menten, Theodore. Advertising Art in the Art Deco Style.New York: Dover, 1975. Print.
An exceptional – though mostly black and white – overview of original Art Deco graphic design – from advertising, magazines, newspapers and other sources. The samples from Los Angeles alone are worth the cheap cover price.
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Polano, Sergio, and Pierpaolo Vetta. ABC of 20th-Century Graphics.Milan: Phaidon Press, 2004. Print.
A concise overview of the work and theories of some of the most influential graphic designers of the 20th Century. This book also looks nice in a briefcase.
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Rothschild, Deborah, Ellen Lupton and Darra Goldstein. Graphic Design in the Mechanical Age.New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998. Print.
A terrific exhibition edition showcasing – and placing into context – rare avant-garde graphic design pieces collected by Merrill C. Berman.
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Smith, Virginia. The Funny Little Man: The Biography of a Graphic Image.New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1993. Print.
A look an historical graphic design icon: ‘The Funny Little Man’ – through advertising, the Bauhaus, propaganda, politics and graphic style.
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Modern Art

Boime, Albert. Revelation of Modernism: Responses to Cultural Crises in Fin-de-siecle Painting.Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 2009. Print.
An enjoyable look at early modern art – arguing how cultural, social and personal struggles had more of an influence on the post-impressionists work than the desire to simply ‘paint.’ Book sort of reminds one that humans are behind all this historical art. And humans don’t always do what history said they had done.
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Brettell, Richard R. Modern Art 1851–1929.Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999. Print.
Modern art put into historical, political, national, social, visual, sexual, technological and institutional context. The chapter on sex alone is rather bawdy.
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Dir. David Grubin. Narr. David McCullough. Degenerate Art.PBS Home Video, 1997. Videocassette.
A powerful look at Adolph Hitler’s post-1933 attack on modern art – an overview of his purge of ‘non-Germanic’ artwork, the 1937 exhibition he used to gather public support and the fate of the artists (and their work). Plus, shows how in the 1990s surviving Degenerate works were then put on display in Hitler’s OWN museum. Now that’s a dish served cold!
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Flam, Jack. Matisse and Picasso: The Story of Their Rivalry and Friendship.Cambridge: Westview, 2003. Print.
Two iconic modern artists: An absorbing biography that reads like a comfortable novel; Could these two guys share an apartment without driving each other crazy?
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Gombrich, E.H. The Story of Art.Pocket ed. New York: Phaidon, 2006. Print.
Gombrich’s classic art history volume updated; accessible as a small, vellum-covered pocket edition, clean typographic design. Easy to read, simple to digest. Fits on smaller coffee table.
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Hughes, Robert. The Shock of the New: The Hundred-Year History of Modern Art.New York: Knopf, 1981. Print.
Robert Hughes original companion book to the BBC/Time-Life documentary series. Starts with the Eiffel Tower’s completion in 1889 and critically steps through the modern art revolution. Really funky early 80s cover design.
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Hulten, Pontus. Futurismo & Futurismi.Milan: Bompiani, 1986. Print.
A large, phone book-sized exhibition catalogue covering pre-Futurism, Futurism and what could be seen as Post-Futurism (other forms of modern art) – all part of a philosophy that Futurism wasn’t just relegated to Italy. Includes a ‘Dictionary of Futurism.’ Whole thing says everything is Futurism. You’re Futurism too!
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Lissitzky, El, and Hans Arp. The Isms of Art.Erlenbach-Zürich: Eugen Rentsch Verlag, 1925. Print.
One of Lissitzky’s graphic design masterpieces: A look at radical modern art movements while they were being radical. Covers important movements from 1914–24.
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Lunday, Elizabeth. Secret Lives of Great Artists: What Your Teachers Never Told You About Master Painters and Sculptors.Philadelphia: Quirk Books, 2008. Print.
A playful, cartoon-filled, tabloid introduction to some of the odd ‘secrets’ of historical artists. Very quick read, short passages, easy to swallow.
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Dir. Menno Meyjes. Perf. John Cusack, Noah Taylor, Leelee Sobieski, Molly Parker. Max.Lions Gate, 2002. DVD.
1918, Munich: Jewish art dealer Max Rothman takes on a new artist, a young corporal named Adolf Hitler. This touching and powerful film explores post-WWI Germany, the influence of the avant-garde, bad performance art and the power of propaganda and politics. Cameos by George Grosz and Peter Capaldi.
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Newmeyer, Sarah. Enjoying Modern Art.New York: Reinhold, 1955. Print.
A very accessible introduction to the field of modern art.
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Parsons, Thomas, and Iain Gale. Post-Impressionism: The Rise of Modern Art 1880–1920.Toronto: NDE, 1999. Print.
A big, slip-cased edition (with LARGE pull–out artwork examples) showcasing what happened after artists such as Cézanne started playing with their paint and not making everything look ‘real.’ Cubism, the fauvist ‘wild animals,’ geometries and eventually, abstraction.
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Read, Herbert. A Concise History of Modern Painting.New York: Praeger, 1959. Print.
Sir Herbert Read’s original historical volume on modern painting broken down into origin, movements, artists. And if you snag an old edition, the pictorial examples look really good on aged paper. Like watching an old Disney documentary.
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Read, Herbert. The Philosophy of Modern Art.New York: Meridian, 1955. Print.
A collection of essays and lectures by Sir Herbert Read. Cover design by Alvin Lustig.
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Richardson, Anthony, and Nikos Stangos, eds. Concepts of Modern Art.New York: Icon, 1974. Print.
An collection of essays by leading historians on different historical modern art movements. Great quick intros to different study areas, may assist in helping one have a decent conversation with a gallery owner.
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Schulz, Isabel, ed. Kurt Schwitters: Colour and Collage.Houston: Menil Foundation, 2011. Print.
Exhibition catalogue and overview of the avant-garde collage work of Kurt Schwitters – with an emphasis on his 3D work and use of colour. Includes details of a 1983 reconstruction of his over-the-top room-size sculpture, Merzbau.
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Terraroli, Valerio, ed. Art of the Twentieth Century: 1900_1919, The Avant-garde Movements.Milan: Skira, 2006. Print.
A volume on early modern art and the massive ‘avant-garde’ changes that occurred up to around the time of the Bauhaus and formation of DADA.
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Vallier, Dora. Abstract Art.New York: Orion, 1970. Print.
An English translation of Dora Vallier’s analysis of modern art’s slow move towards abstraction. These folks were really obsessed with painting what they saw. So throwing up on the canvas would take time.
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Varnedoe, Kirk. High & Low: Modern Art and Popular Culture.New York: Museum of Modern Art, Abrams, 1990. Print.
A detailed, historical look at how modern art has changed the world – its influence on the popular items of everyday life. Theoretic essays, plus: Graffiti.
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Wescher, Herta. Collage.New York: Abrams, 1968. Print.
A history of the art of collage – prior to World War II – collected in a large edition; beautifully-printed, with ‘tipped-in’ colour examples. Better than scrapbooking; but really, this is THE origins of scrapbooking, no?
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Modern History and Design

Banham, Reyner. Theory and Design in the First Machine Age.7th ed. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1992. Print.
An analysis of early modern architecture, its rational, mechanical influences; Futurism, Cubism, de Stijl and the Bauhaus.
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Bierce, Ambrose. The Damned Thing.New York, NY: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1898. Web. Project Gutenberg EBook. Retrieved 28 Oct. 2012.
Short story about a murderous villain just outside our perception of colour, sound and smell. Just because you think Things don’t exist doesn’t mean they don’t!
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Eksteins, Modris. Rites of Spring: The Great War and the Birth of the Modern Age.Boston: Mariner/Peter Davison, 2000. Print.
Eksteins takes apart social and nationalistic causes for The New – starting with Stravinsky’s premiere of The Rite of Spring, then World War I; following up with Lindburgh, All Quiet on the Western Front and some angry dude named Adolph.
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Erickson, Amanda. ‘A Brief History of the Parking Meter’.The Atlantic, 03 April 2012. Web. Retrieved 17 October 2012.
The ‘Magee-Hale Park-O-Meter’ is invented, shows up in Oklahoma City. (And FLomm pretends the year isn’t on this article.)
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Fussell, Paul. The Great War and Modern Memory: The Illustrated Edition.New York: Sterling, 2012. Print.
Paul Fussell’s 1975 detailed study of World War I – which side steps honour-written memoirs and proud histories of the day – offers a much different examination of ‘The War to End All Wars.’ Illustrated edition filled with photographs, maps and all sorts of cool stuff.
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Dir. Tim Kirby. Narr. Denis Lawson. The Genius of Design: Episode 1 Ghosts in the Machine, Episode 2 Designs for Living.Athena, 2011. DVD.
Two episodes of this BBC documentary series covering 19th century industry, 20th century architecture, the Bauhaus and how the United States humanized modern design by making telephones less boxy.
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Golston, Robert. The Russian Revolution.New York: Fawcett, 1966. Print.
A quick overview of the 1917 Russian Revolution and the events and philosophies that put things in motion.
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Dir. Carl Byker, Isaac Mizrahi. Narr. Judy Dench (UK), Salome Jens (US). The Great War and the Shaping of the 20th Century.KCET/Los Angeles, BBC, 1996. Videocassette.
A compelling 8-part documentary overview of World War I – going beyond the trenches into the war’s impact on individuals, culture and nations.
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Jackson, Kevin. Constellation of Genius: 1922, Modernism Year One.London: Hutchinson, 2012. Print.
A look at significant daily events in the year 1922; posing that this time period is when the creative modern world really came into its own. People die, people invent.
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Lichtenstein, Claude, and Franz Engler, eds. Streamlined: A Metaphor for Progress, the Esthetics of Minimized Drag.Baden: Lars Müller, 1989. Print.
Teardrop–shaped aeroplanes, trains and automobiles – an overview of Art Deco in motion.
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Platt, Frank C. Great Battles of World War I: In the Air.New York: Signet, 1966. Print.
Zoooooooom! Dramatic accounts of World War I aerial combat.
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Willett, John. Art & Politics in the Weimar Period: The New Sobriety, 1917–1933.New York: Pantheon, 1978. Print.
An exploration of the expansive modern epoch that flourished in Germany between the Great Wars. Parties and parties and music and art! Before the Nazis made the fun go away.
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Dir. various. Perf. Sean Patrick Flanery, Corey Carrier, George Hall, Harrison Ford. The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles.ABC Television, The Family Channel, 1992–96. Television, Videocassette.
George Lucas’ often uneven educational series placing a young version of his Indiana Jones character in historical situations; whereas, adolescent Henry Jones Jr. ends up meeting a rather large cadre of who’s who in modern history. Edited versions of the episodes – with documentaries created for the History Channel – can be found on DVD.
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Photography

Adam, Hans-Christian, and Andreas Krase. Eugene Atget’s Paris.Icon ed. Köln: Taschen, 2001. Print.
Between 1897 and 1927, street photographer Atget captures Paris with his lens. Even though painters think they’re better at this stuff.
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Bourcier, Nöel. André Kertész.Phaidon 55 ed. London: Phaidon, 2001. Print.
Avant-garde photographer Kertész shoots atypical compositions, uses unusual crops and distorts nudes.
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Haus, Andreas. Moholy-Nagy: Photographs & Photograms.1st English ed. New York: Pantheon, 1980. Print.
The obsessively-constructed structural photographs, people and camera-less compositions of László Moholy-Nagy.
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Jeffrey, Ian. Josef Sudek.Phaidon 55 ed. London: Phaidon, 2001. Print.
Sudek gives photographic life to everyday Prague. Again, pissing off painters.
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Koetzle, Hans-Michael. Photo Icons: The Story Behind the Pictures Volume 1.Cologne: Taschen, 2008. Print.
Every picture tells a story: A collection of anecdotal histories of major early photographic works. Includes the early avant garde!
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Moholy-Nagy, László. Bauhaus 8: Painting Photography Film.2nd ed. Dessau: Bauhaus, 1927. Print.
Between 1924 and 1930, the Bauhaus published a series of 15 theoretical design books. This edition is an overview of Hungarian Constructivist László Moholy-Nagy’s photography ideology and how it can lead to a ‘transformation of human vision’ – and how motorcycles look really cool when photographed.

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Newhall, Beaumont. The History of Photography.5th ed. New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1982. Print.
MoMA curator Beaumont Newhall helped get photography accepted as a form of art. And he published this book, the first ever text on the history of the photographic profession.
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Russian Avant-Garde

Anikst, Mikhail. Soviet Commercial Design of the Twenties.New York: Abbeville, 1987. Print.
Excellent overview of early Soviet graphic design, NEP, advertising, publishing and more. And one of Shepard Fairey’s earliest ‘go to’ source books.
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Host Anthony Graham-Dixon. The Art of Russia.BBC, 2008. Web. Retrieved 24 Apr. 2013.
Excellent three part television history of Russian art – through early settlers, revolution to the Russia of today. See: Malevich’s Black Square cause the room to RUMBLE!
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Elliott, David. New Worlds: Russian Art and Society 1900–1937.Paperback ed. New York: W W Norton, 1990. Print.
Upheaval, revolution and an utopian experiment – massive change in Russian society is reflected in new approaches to art and design. Much different from just a few years earlier, when everything had to have some sort of gold ornament on it.
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Gray, Camilla. The Russian Experiment in Art: 1863–1922.London: Thames and Hudson, 1962. Print.
When Russia was hidden behind an Iron Curtain, Camilla Gray’s book provided one of the first overviews of an art (and design) history that was private from the rest of the world.
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Kandinsky, Wassily. Bauhaus 9: Point and Line to Plane.Dessau: Bauhaus, 1926. Internet Archive. Retrieved 16 Mar. 2012.
Between 1924 and 1930, the Bauhaus published a series of 15 theoretical design books. This one is a treatise on the interaction of form and composition by Russian Avant-Garde visionary Wassily Kandinsky. It’s how everything goes together, reacts to each other and how it does what it does.
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Lissitzky-Küppers, Sophie. El Lissitzky: Life, Letters, Texts.New York: Thames and Hudson, 1967. Print.
A detailed overview of the life and work of influential constructivist and designer El Lissitzky – from PROUNS to creating the ‘look’ of the New Soviet State.
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Lupton, Ellen, and Elaine Lustig Cohen. Letters from the Avant Garde.New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1996. Print.
How the avant-garde communicated: Letters on letterhead, in envelopes or on postcards – typed or written by the original hands. From Marinetti to the Bauhaus, an excellent visual collection of historical correspondence.
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Terraroli, Valerio, ed. Art of the Twentieth Century: 1900_1919, The Avant-garde Movements.Milan: Skira, 2006. Print.
A volume on early modern art and the massive ‘avant-garde’ changes that occurred up to around the time of the Bauhaus and formation of DADA.
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Sound

Lewis, Daniel, Tony Conrad, Paul Szp, et al. Futurismo: The Soundtrack to a Typeface.Buffalo: P22 Records, 1998. CD.
Nine tracks created an an homage to the futurist manifesto of sound, L'arte dei Rumori [The Art of Noises], 1913. Functions as the soundtrack to P22’s Il Futurismo font – because every font needs a soundtrack!
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Minnesota Public Radio. The Making of Star Wars for Radio: A Fable for the Mind’s Eye.National Public Radio, 1981. Radio.
In 1981, NPR adapted the first Star Wars film into a 13 part radio drama. Things were expanded, Death Star plans are ‘copied’ and Han Solo is a bigger double crosser than we remember. This doc – available as an extra in the ‘collectors edition’ – covers how it was all pieced together.
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Marchment, Jack. Who’s Afraid of Iannis Xenakis?.Glasgow: Herb Recordings, 2009. CD.
Jack Marchment’s carefully crafted electronic interpretations of Josef Albers, F.T. Marinetti and Roman poet Ovid – among others.
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Oliver, King. Off the Record: The Complete 1923 Jazz Band Recordings.Champaign: Archeophone Records, 2006. CD.
Pre-swing jazz, restored: The only known recordings of Joe ‘King’ Oliver and his band, featuring a young Louis Armstrong!
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Rinzler, J.W. The Sounds of Star Wars.San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2010. Print.
An excellent history of Ben Burtt’s ‘real world’ approach to sound design for Star Wars. Comes with its own button-pushing sound playing thing. With a headphone jack so one doesn’t annoy too many people.
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Typography

Alas, Joel. ‘The History of the Times New Roman Typeface’.Financial Times, 1 August 2009. Web. Retrieved 11 August 2009.
Mike Parker and Number 54 – an alternate history of the Times New Roman fonts – where they may have come from, who may have designed them – and their connection to early aviation.
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American Type Founders. Specimen Book and Catalogue 1923.Elizabeth, NJ: American Type Founders, 1923. Web. Internet Archive. Retrieved 22 Jan. 2012.
Historical and collectible: American Type Founders’ 1923 ‘catalogue’ is a rare, industry-specific piece of printed art. Decorative borders, printers cuts and equipment, fonts and, of course, advertising copy written to sell, sell, sell!

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Bruckner, D.J.R. Masters of American Design: Frederic Goudy.New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1990. Print.
Beautiful edition detailing the life of one of the most prolific type designers of the early 20th century. And his wife Bertha.
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Burke, Christopher. Paul Renner: The Art of Typography.New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1998. Print.
All about context: An historical, social and philosophical biography of Paul Renner – designer of Futura – his involvement in Germany in the 1920s and 30s – and his quest to create truly modern typography. Plus: Nazis!
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De Jong, Cees W., Alston W. Purvis, Jan Tholenaar. Type: A Visual History of Typefaces and Graphic Styles Volume 2 1901–1938.Cologne: Taschen, 2010. Print.
The second of two volumes showcasing printed works from the large type specimen collection of Jan Tholenaar. This edition covers the move from classical type forms to geometric. And has copper ink too!
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Drucker, Johanna. The Visible Word: Experimental Typography and Modern Art, 1909–1923.Paperback ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996. Print.
A comprehensive analysis of the experimental type deconstructions of the early Moderns. And what they were REALLY up to.
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Heller, Steven, and Louise Fili. Scripts: Elegant Lettering from Design’s Golden Age.New York: Thames and Hudson, 2011. Print.
An gorgeous exhibition of script lettering from multiples of olde, browning sources.
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Hlavsa, Oldrich. A Book of Type and Design.2nd ed. Prague: SNTL, 1960. Print.
A beautiful collection of typefaces; culled from historical collections and mid-century specimen books, peppered with loose pen illustrations. Printed with real metal plates too!
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Hutt, Allen. Fournier: The Compleat Typographer.Totowa, NJ: Rowman and Littlefield, 1972. Print.
Pierre Simon Fournier was a French type designer – who managed to merge typography with rococo – resulting in gorgeous letterforms and ornamental ‘dingbat’-like flowers – which are called ‘fleurons.’ So now you know.
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McLean, Ruari. Jan Tschichold: Typographer.Boston: David R. Godine, 1975. Print.
From attending the Bauhaus exhibition of 1923 to Penguin Books to Sabon: Ruari McLean’s original overview of the life’s work of ‘New Typography’ advocate Jan Tschichold. (And this edition was later rebuilt into McLean’s Jan Tschichold: A Life In Typography)
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Spencer, Herbert. Pioneers of Modern Typography.Revised ed. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2004. Print.
Updated edition of Spencer’s 1969 book that first brought interest to the typographic work of the early moderns. History doesn’t happen unless someone writes it down. Spencer was one of the first!
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Tschichold, Jan. The New Typography.Berlin: Education Association of German Printers, 1928. Print.
The trend-setting book that put modern typography in hands of 20th century designers. Tschichold was the ultimate modern/NEW typography groupie – and cause he wrote well – he was taken rather seriously by his readers. Result: The world changes.
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Vorticism

Lewis, Wyndham, ed. BLAST: Review of the Great English Vortex.London: John Lane, 1914. Issuu. Web. Retrieved 6 Feb. 2012.
Vorticism was the English contribution to modern art – and this was the first edition of their journal, with poems by Ezra Pound. A lot of it just (quite ‘literally’) BLASTS things they don’t like – with big, bold typography. Not a bad idea.
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Lewis, Wyndham, ed. BLAST: Review of the Great English Vortex War Number.London: John Lane, 1915. Issuu. Web. Retrieved 6 Feb. 2012.
This was the second – and last — edition of the Vorticist journal BLAST; The Great War was underway and BLAST takes a look. Published just about the time everyone was starting to realize WWI wasn’t going to turn out as everyone expected.
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